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Richard Branson's Leadership Style - Essay on Management

7 pages
1818 words
George Washington University
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Richard Branson is a renowned author and the founder of Virgin Group of companies which is a chain of an airline, bridal wear, hotels, banks and automobile companies. Sir Branson unique leadership styles and qualities that have fashioned him into the entrepreneur he is today. The leadership of Richard Branson has dramatically influenced the success of his Virgin Empire (Kinicki & Fugate, 2016, p.151). The paper discusses Richard Bransons leadership styles and skills and their impact on Virgin group of Companies.

In the Virgin Group, Richard Branson applies participative leadership skills. The management strongly believes in team building and shares their vision with all their employees. Sir Branson is quite a natural person and very approachable. He creates an environment for negotiation with his management and other employees. The employees receive a monthly letter to the employees with details of Virgins future vision and plans. Mr. Branson even invites his younger employees to his house for parties. The entity believes that employees should be prioritized and made happy to motivate them to be more productive. Richard Branson goes extreme measures to ensure that all employees are motivated by creating a pleasant working environment. The result of the employees satisfaction can be tracked into the Groups financials as the profits margins are evident.

Theres a lot that leaders could borrow from his charismatic leadership. Charisma encourages a healthy relationship with stressful cross-sectional operations. Sir Branson has implemented a non- hierarchical structure of command which allows employees to freely engage with top management. The environment will enable them to air their suggestions and ideology that can resolve some situations with no fear. That encourages a respectful working environment where different groups of employees inspire and motivate each other.

Ways that Virgin group of companies motivates employees

Richard Branson is known for his vibrant transformational leadership. He is a great motivator and addresses the employees challenges individually. He encourages his employees to apply the rule breaker approach where their creativity is not limited, and they are allowed to use unconventional methods as long as they work efficiently. The employees have actively involved n the decision making processes. Richard Branson also recognizes the success of delegation. He is a global trotter and ensures that he gets his time by delegating some of his responsibilities to his skilled employees. The Commission is a crucial motivator for employees who are ambitious and desire to grow and get involved in the operations of Virgin group of companies.

Sir Branson uses the Abraham Maslows Hierarchy of Needs in planning the managerial strategies to motivate his workers (Kets & Korotov, 2011, p.44). The theory helps them directly identify the needs of the employees and create incentives that satisfy these requirements. The popular one being financial incentives since most peoples drive to work is to meet their financial needs. The end goal of this kind of motivation is to increase the productivity and effectiveness of employees. The employees tend to immerse themselves as deep in the functionality as they will consider the companys achievements as personal growths. The method motivates the personnel to perform their most excellent as they feel like they are an element of the organization.

Richard Bransons unique aspects that have facilitated successful mesh the multifaceted organization

Virgin group of companies is a fast growing venture as Sir Branson continues to Virginize all industries in the World Economies. Virgin has become a multifaceted organization, and Richard Bransons unique aspects have facilitated a seamless, successful mesh.

Richard Branson is self-aware, and this shines through his personality and image. For instance, his casual appearance and personality communicate the casualness and rule-breaking which is integral to the Virgin brand. He also can find relaxed situations that minimize stress within him and the organization because he has natural going personality. Self-awareness has sharpened his skills in decision making, stress management and motivation for all stakeholders in the multifaceted organization.

Sir Branson is inspirational and a role model. There are millions of people who covet his success. A good leader should be one that people look up to. Branson can motivate his subordinates by listening and affecting their ideologies which again, makes them feel involved. He grows people and builds their confidence in task performance. He shows a lot of trusts in the person who in turn trust him as well.

As a role model, he is quite approachable which could. As a result birth million dollar ideas. He is also vibrant in encouraging his personnels to achieve the organizations goals. The motivation ensures that the employees do what he wants to be done.

Great leaders should be confident and persistent. The confidence should not only be in themselves but also in the employees that they designate leadership position. Branson has been persistent ever since he was young. He has pushed himself to excel even when he could not read at the age of 8 because of his dyslexia condition. Besides that, he has had some of his projects fail such as the Virgin cola and Vodka but still bounced back. A good leader should be capable of overcoming obstacles. The uniqueness is a significant attribute in his success with Virgin.

Another quality of Richard Branson is that he is structural and skillful in how he meets his goals. A good leader should be sound within his priorities and should be involved and committed to solving matters at hand. Therefore, Richard Branson has set system both internally and externally that act as metrics that monitor the internal and external environment of the organization that enables Virgin to learn or excel even with its mega growth.

Richard Bransons vision on his group of companies is focused on avoiding global warming. He communicates a lot of emphasis on environmental conservation and reservation planet. He is well aware of the effectiveness of proper communication and articulation in selling his vision. Communication is crucial for the management of Virgin group, and they ensure that all relevant information is communicated to all the employees regarding their plans and focus interests.

Richard Branson has identified the significant adjustments that need to be executed within the in Virgin organization to match the evolving environmental economy. Consequently, he instills the vision to the employees and stakeholders such that regardless of the external influences, the foundation stays aligned with the vision. Richard Branson applied Commacks model in the improvement of the idea (Mills, 2017, p.411). The critical concepts borrowed from the model are: guidelines of engagement, envisioning and implementation.

Richard Branson fosters casual and voluntary talks with the workforce to address issues and interest of the organization. Through these engagements, he encourages the employees to openly air their thoughts on the companys visions and missions. Richard Branson can communicate and articulate his ideologies through meetings and workshops where professional and experts decisively assess the companys operations and profitability of conserving the environment. It is through that that he has been able to convince the stakeholders of his vision for the Company.

The evaluation of the proposed strategies is done communally through these workshops. The assessments are quite relevant because they identify the loopholes and market gaps and enable the team makes project adjustments. Such meetings make it easy to implement projects and visions and mitigate unwanted results since each stakeholder is well aware of their responsibilities.

Richard Branson has lead initiatives that have propelled the organization to achieve its goal of mitigating global warming. Through his hard work and resilience, Richard Branson is viewed as an inclusive leader who has a positive impact on others.

Criteria to scrutinize Richard Bransons leadership style

Assuming I got a job as a manager in Virgin, I would use the following criteria to evaluate if Richard Bransons leadership would be fit for me as a manager working under him. First, approach: whether he is purpose driven and confident. Second, personality; whether he is hospitable and charismatic. Third, his skills and professionalism; whether he has an experience in leading and the magnitude of his success. Fourth; the ability of his franchise to be of a going concern shortly; fifth, personal characteristics; is he detail oriented? Is he a risk taker? The sixth criteria; is he open to evolving dynamics of businesses?

My conclusion from the evaluation of Sir Bransons leadership style is that boldness is essential when you are in a leadership position regardless of what peoples opinions. It has made him an excellent communicator and influence. Richard Branson is also follower conscious which allows him to identify and acknowledge the contribution of all employees. Secondly, it is essential to be strength savvy. For instance, Sir Branson recognized his strengths and selected a rule-breaking type of leadership that brands Virgin group.

Thirdly, passion and focus are essential traits for all entrepreneurs. He is a visionary evangelist and inspires confidence for growth. It is also important to acknowledge the possibility and create systems that allow alteration of projections to accommodate the contingencies. Lastly, it is essential to diversify the sources of revenue and keep up with the dynamics of time and culture to retain relevance.

Is Richard Branson a global leader?

Richard Branson is a global leader. Branson as the chair of Virgin group of companies has spearheaded the growth of the franchise to be the umbrella of over three hundred companies which are spread over 30 countries all over the World. The Virgin group has also penetrated into many industries from aircraft, finance, drinks; fashion to music which makes the brand name global. He is also a founder of the Elder which is a body of leaders whose aim is to discern the global challenges and evolution of economy and technology.

Richard Branson, through his investments and involvement, is designed for the global economy because he is purpose driven by a clear vision and is committed to articulate his interests. He is particularly innovative and creative and uses the skills to identify critical gaps in the market and takes advantage of fill the gaps to satisfy his target customer needs. For instance his upgrade on the Virgin Atlantis aircrafts of improving the flying experience by enhancing the comfortability of the seats and scaling the food order service by easy to use screens. This sets him apart as other planes are working tirelessly to reduce the costs he is doing the vice versa because the airlines finances can accommodate the upgrade.

Predict Richard Bransons success as a leader over the next five years.

Richard Branson will still be a flourishing leader. He is set in a way that he is aware of situations happening in all the companies and decisions can be made in his absence. He has allowed democracy and scrapped off bureaucracy which makes decision making the companies fast and easy.



Kets V., & Korotov, K. (2011). Leadership development. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

Kinicki, A., & Fugate, M. (2016). Organizational behavior: A practical, problem-solving approach.

Mills, A. J. (2007). Organizational behaviour in a global context. Peterborough: Broadview Press.


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